November Update
Date: 11/01/2016

November brings with it a hint of winter and close proximity to the end of another calendar year. It also marks the end of the church year, the beginning of Advent, and plans for the holidays, which are right around the corner. Fall also reminds of man’s life, how we are like the grass that grows but in time withers away. November 1 also marks All Saints’ Day, when we remember those who have gone before us and gained the victory. Our hearts join with the songwriter, “Saints of God have peace forever who endeavored while on earth to battle, strive. Oft their memory brings a longing; we are yearning there in heaven to abide” (SHZ 140:1).

As we make plans for the holidays, and also for 2017, may we remember our Heavenly Father’s many blessings and the hope of heaven that waits at the end of our journey.

Updates on Other LLC Activities:

• The Wright County Fairgrounds in Howard Lake, Minn. has been secured as the location for 2017 LLC Summer Services, to be hosted by the Cokato congregation. It will be an outdoor venue using tents in place of steel buildings as was the case in Toronto this past summer. It’s exciting to think of the possibilities an outdoor venue offers, but it will require a lot of planning as we adjust from the more traditional school or arena settings.

• Thirty-eight couples from many locations attended the Minister and Wives camp held at Kamp Kipa, October 14–16. The camp is held every year in different locations, allowing those unable to travel longer distances to attend. Topics of discussion included, “A Mutual Calling,” “Joys and Concerns of Our Day,” and “The Nature of Soul Care.” The discussions were rich and uplifting. 

• Staff at the LLC office enjoyed a visit on October 4 with Finnish minister Valde Palola and his wife Marja-Liisa, who are serving on the SRK speaking tour of LLC congregations. Valde and Marja-Liisa were also able to attend the Minister and Wives camp at Kamp Kipa during their time spent in the Southwest.

• A new music album, My Joy Will Ring Forever, was released for sale. It is available through the LLC Bookstores, LLC’s online store, and also via iTunes and Amazon. This is a beautiful recording of youth singing at the Toronto church after the 2016 Summer Services. 

• In addition, there are other newly-released publications items: SHZ Chorale Book—hard/soft three-volume sets; A Golden Vessel poetry book; Fortifying the Foundation—the third volume in the editorial book series; 2017 LLC Wall Calendar; and the new LLC Directory. Also, those who weren’t able to attend the Publications Week activities can view the presentation online on LLC’s website (click on Publications Week Video under Quick Links). Coming in November is the Illustrated Home Bible and the 2016 Christmas in Zion

• A Sunday school teachers video on “How to Create a Lesson Plan” was sent out to all congregations in early September and is posted for teachers to reference on the LLC website under Quick Links.

• A Bible Class teachers workshop was conducted over iMeet on September 29. Presentations were given on lesson planning, teaching using a story-telling technique, and using resources in teaching.

• LLC congregations in Phoenix and Prescott Valley continue to work through the immigration process for Harri Vähäjylkkä. They are still hopeful that he can come before the end of the year to assume his duties as pastor.

• On October 18 the LLC Personnel–Facilities Committee met to discuss short and long-term personnel needs, as well as future facility’s needs. As the work of the LLC increases, we find a need for additional staffing and facilities to support the work. May God bless these discussions as we plan for our future needs.  

• Changes will be coming to the LLC Publications department in 2017. Publications Director, Paul Waaraniemi, has given notice that he plans to retire at the end of February, and Ruth Roiko will retire from her position as Layout Artist at the end of April. Paul has served the LLC for over 20 years and Ruth for over 30 years. When they retire they will take many years of experience with them; yet we trust that God will bless the work with additional gifts to serve. We wish them both God’s blessings as they make retirement plans. Please inquire at the LLC office if you’re interested in either position.

• The LLC Board of Directors met October 29 and took several actions, some of which include:

– Approved 2017 staff wage and benefit package

– Approved the 2017 Operating Plan and budget

• November 11 is Veterans Day, in the U.S. and Remembrance Day in Canada. This is a day when we celebrate and remember the service of all military veterans. I would like to thank all of those who have served our countries in this way. Without your service our countries would be much different places to live. Today, we live with freedoms with which God has blessed us through the sacrifice of many men and women over the years.

Thank you so much for your continued support, and ask that God would continue to bless and direct His work.

Eric Jurmu

November 2016 Voice of Zion



Laestadian Lutheran Church 279 N Medina St, Suite #150, Loretto, MN 55357
Phone 763-479-2422 | Fax 763-479-2133 | Email